LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Back pain can be debilitating, affecting everything from enjoying hobbies to good quality sleep, even walking.
Most assume it takes a risky surgery to fix long-term pain. But, for some patients at one Little Rock hospital, it’s as simple as a few needles and 15 minutes of your time.
For Donald Gohman, every visit to the Baptist Health Spine Center is another step in his journey to heal. The 99-year-old has been fighting back pain for decades as a veteran of three different wars; World War II, Korea, and Vietnam.
“I joined the Navy in 1941 and retired in 1971,” Gohman explained. “The saga of the back pains really began during WWII during Guadalcanal. When it actually struck, it was like a piece of lightning going down my leg and feet…matter of fact, I could not walk.”
Many would assume the pain is just a side effect of life serving others, but Dr. Drew Beasley, a pain management specialist, calls it something else.
“He has arthritis in his lower back, or lumbar spondylosis, and that was the diagnosis that we went with,” Beasley said.
The solution was a series of treatments, all minimally invasive outpatient procedures that could be done in the office.
“Most of them are at most 10 to 15 minutes or less,” Beasley said.
From steroid injections to nerve ablations, the treatments are just as effective as surgery with none of the downtime.
For Gohman, it’s the answer to a lifetime of searching and a new way to focus on his hobbies and passions, including his two loves: golfing and gardening.
“Don’t hesitate,” Gohman recommends, “because there’s one thing I have learned: that pain will never go away all on itself.”
To see if you would be a good candidate for chronic pain management, check out the Baptist Health Spine Center.